Hi Jess and Russ, so to get started tell us a little bit about your podcast, Wife of Crime.
We are a biweekly true crime podcast out of the Bronx! Jess (the wife) tells her husband Russ all her favorite true crime stories and he reacts to them!
One of the things that I think makes Wife of Crime unique is that you two are a couple, but have such different viewpoints, talk to us about how and why that works with your format.
Jess: We have been together for 11 years and have always had opposing views on a lot of subjects. The beauty about us being married and doing a podcast like this is that we can totally disagree sometimes and even get annoyed at each other but at the end of the day we are in love so we respect each other and will agree to disagree. I’ve learned that I need to let him be himself and stop trying to convince him to think like me. In our society today, people can’t disagree anymore without it turning into a fight or a big ordeal… this podcast shows that you can disagree sometimes and still love each other.
What was the moment that made you go ‘we should start a true crime podcast?
Jess: I am a huge true crime addict and true crime podcast fan but I noticed while listening to multiple podcasts that there were always either 2 female hosts or 2 male hosts or if the hosts were opposite sexes they agreed on everything and that’s not always real life… or at least real life for me. So I thought to myself… Russ is pretty funny and since he was born and raised in the Bronx he has a very “rough around the edges” way of looking at the world plus I love his accent and knew other people would too. We should start a podcast.
Russ: When Jess asked me I wasn’t totally on board with the idea but I thought “oh well why not” she talks to me about all this true crime stuff already anyway let’s see what it sounds like when we record it”
So how did you actually get Wife of Crime off the ground? Had either of you worked on something like this before?
We both have zero production experience. It started at Guitar Center. We walked in and found a sales associate dude and asked what mics we needed. After about an hour we walked out with $500 worth of equipment and no clue how to use it. Jess then spent days on YouTube, blogs and even asked her brother’s best friend Nate advice on how to set this stuff up. Meanwhile Russ enjoyed the yankees LOL. After figuring it all out we decided to try and record something. The rest is history!
What was your experience with true crime before starting your own show? Are there any other true crime podcasts you listen to and love?
Jess: Well I was born in the 80s and grew up in the 90s so as a kid I loved shows like Unsolved Mysteries and Rescue 911 but I first really got into true crime podcasts in 2014 when I listened to Serial Season 1. I was born and raised in Baltimore and the case they cover is out of Baltimore MD. I was OBSESSED! From that point on I was super hooked. I listened to My Favorite Murder, Crime Junkie, Criminal, Redhanded, Morbid and the list goes on!
Russ: It all started on the mean streets of the Bronx…. I was a poor kid, and all I wanted was baseball cards so one day I stole a pack of baseball cards from a little store called Victors. I guess that was my first taste of true crime! I’m actually not huge into true crime. I used to listen to a couple podcasts, the popular ones that everyone listens too… but me not being obsessed with it is what makes me a good counterpart to Jess and what makes our show work. We’ve learned 80% of true crime listeners are female so I am the voice of the 20%!
How has the show evolved over time? Anything from the beginning that you look back at and laugh about how far you’ve come?
Russ: In the beginning when I would open a beer while recording Jess would say “Shhhh they can hear that!” and now she doesn’t care anymore.
Jess: I am a perfectionist to the core so in the beginning I wanted everyone to like us. I was very worried about what people thought. I realized that my husband is someone in this world that is very authentically himself, with no filter and if he was going to be my co-host I couldn’t worry about what people thought so much. Eventually I let go of being perfect and realized we just need to be US and our people would find us… and they did!
What are each of your favorite cases you’ve covered so far?
Jess: My favorite is “Not Me, Not Today- The survival of Alison Botha”
Russ: My favorite is “Not Me, Not Today – The survival of Susan Walters”
Both of us love the survivor episodes the best… It’s one of the only things we agree on! Haha
Tell our readers where they can keep up with Wife of Crime online!
Facebook- Wife of crime- The crime family
End of Interview